After walking the first batter to face him, deGrom put any worries to bed by striking out the next three batters with perfectly placed fastballs, one at 99 mph. In fact, other than the fourth inning, no Marlins hitter recorded a hit. Unfortunately, three Marlins got hits that inning which led to two runs, and due to a lack of offense, a loss. He did, though, set a new Major League record.
“You’re always in this predicament where one unlucky or lucky instance can cost you the game,” manager Mickey Callaway said after the 5-3 loss. “It does put more pressure on you to be perfect.”
“What can happen, happened tonight when the game’s always close,” Callaway continued. “It’s one not even really bad mistake. The player gets lucky and hits a two-run double, and then you lose the game.”
Mets’ center fielder, Austin Jackson, had a 34% catch probability on the ball that would cost deGrom the game. The Mets said they were bringing in Jackson for a defensive upgrade in center field, but he has been atrocious, posting -13 DRS and -16.4 UZR/150 this season. It is more likely that Brandon Nimmo (0 DRS, -7.6 UZR/150) would have made that catch, which would have saved the Mets two runs. This is yet another instance of the Mets not valuing defense enough and it cost them big time.
Though, that two-run double was all deGrom would give up, so he has officially set a new all-time MLB record for most consecutive starts allowing three earned runs or fewer (26), breaking King Cole‘s 108-year-old record.
Overall in the start, he pitched seven innings allowing two earned runs on three hits and two walks, striking out nine.
With one amazing start after the other, and now an impressive MLB record under his belt, it particularly hurt to learn that because of weather, deGrom will likely lose a start to add to his Cy Young resume this season.
“Looking back, hindsight 20/20, I wish I would’ve pitched Sunday,” deGrom said, referring to his being scratched before the Mets played the Phillies. “But with the report we got, it didn’t seem like we were going to be able to play, and we decided that we were going to try to pitch Monday. It just didn’t work out.”
No starting pitcher has won the Cy Young Award with a losing record. With Jacob deGrom having an 8-9 record but outstanding overall statistics, that is a possibility to change this season. Across 29 starts he has a 1.71 ERA, 2.06 FIP, 216 ERA+, and 0.954 WHIP. In 195.0 innings he has struck out 239 and walked 44.